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Seniors fitness trainer moves online as face-to-face demand disappears

By James Vukmirovic | Dudley | News | Published:

An online keep-fit class aims to put fitness and friendship first for seniors across the region.

Mark Phillips from Sedgley is doing keep fit classes virtually for 50s and over

Mobility exercises, fall prevention and exercises to help people with high blood pressure and physical issues such as arthritis and knee problems are all included in the classes being taught by personal trainer Mark Phillips.

He said: "I've been a physical fitness trainer for seniors for the last twenty years, but due to this virus, my face-to-face business has collapsed.

"I'm trying to make a difference for people by doing sessions for those who are stuck at home or are quarantined."

The sessions cost £4.50 each and take place over Zoom, with Mark also offering a free consultation to every participant to assess their needs beforehand.

Mark said he had been teaching fitness classes to over-50s for more than 20 years, with more than 4,000 classes in a number of locations around the region.

His company Mark Phillips Fitness has also developed a reputation for innovative training programmes, with a Nintendo Wii course for the elderly just one example.

The 41-year-old from Dudley said the changes from face-to-face classes to doing them over the internet had been a challenge, but said there had been some very rewarding experiences from it.

He said: "It takes a lot more to set up because a lot of people don't know much about technology.

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"However, once they are set up, it opens up their lives because they sometimes don't get to see other people all through the day.

"Obviously, I'm trying to regrow my business, but the main thing is trying to help people as I work with a lot of vulnerable and disadvantaged people.

"By doing this, people are able to engage with each other, which increases the social interaction, so it's really rewarding to do this and I would like more people to know about it."

The classes are currently taking place on Mondays at 9.40am, with Mark saying he intended to increase the number of classes if more people joined in.

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He said: "Depending on demand, we aim to increase to five or, possibly, even 10 sessions a week.

"With the 12 week shield being up for elderly people, we'll be running until at least the middle of June and I have the intentions of going on for as long as possible."

To find out more about the classes and other services Mark Phillips Fitness provides, go to http://markphillipsfitness.co.uk/ or call 07765 138475

James Vukmirovic

By James Vukmirovic
Community Reporter - @jamesvukmirovic

Community Reporter at the Express & Star, helping under-represented communities to find a voice in Wolverhampton. Contact me at james.vukmirovic@expressandstar.co.uk.

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